Wednesday, December 13, 2006

$50 Best Buy Card

Hey I got a $50 Best Buy card during a quaterly meeting at work. That was a little embarrasing but I plan to spend it on Mo, Aidan and Minx because they have been putting up with my long hours and foul moods.

I think Adian would like a new Blue's Clues DVD. Marissa, probably a Charmed CD and Minx a bluetooth headset to talk to the other cats handsfree.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

TX Blogging

I'm posting this Blog using my Palm TX PDA.

The interface isn't pretty and I have no idea what this is gonna look like after I publish it. I was hoping to add a photo but I can't find the upload button.

Monday, December 04, 2006

December Playday

Aidan and friends spent time at holiday get together last weekend.

Charlotte, Clover & Brandon, & Aubrey

Zoom Zoom Update

It's almost been a month with the Mazda 3 now. This little car as been a joy to drive and best of all it's very convenient running errands and shuttling the little guy around. Another plus is the great fuel efficiency, I can drive for at least two weeks daily without having to refuel.

Aidan says he likes how he can drop cookie crumbs on the seat and watch daddy vacuum it up.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Bye by plastic table

The weather in Toronto today was terrible. After a record November high of 16C we got cold rain and high winds. And while walking across the parking at work today I almost lost my big arse umbrella to the wind. Anyways I arrived home and gazed into the backyard when I noticed a part of a tree branch miraculously balanced on a plastic table that I had temporarily moved outside. "Pretty neat" I thought given the strong winds. Then after about 5 mintes of admiration, I said "Impossible". Upon closer inspection my suspicions were correct, a branch had broken off an oak tree and speared the table top. The plastic top isn't thin either. I guess that's how people get killed during tornados.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Confucious say "Made in China - keep receipt"

Update to the tile saw I bought from Rona. I believed I was getting a deal by only paying $79 vs. $149 or more. We'll this weekend the fence on the saw broke. You'd expect the motor or something like that to break but not the fence. The locking cam attached to a threaded rod inside the fence no longer grips the threads. In fact there are no threads left so there's no way of locking the fence the to table.

I can't find the reciept anymore to get a replacement, but at least I can fix it with some good old fashion US of A Loctite.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Old School Auction

Today Warner and I went to the "Starburst" video game and vending machine auction. This action specializes in 80's coin-op video games. But before we headed out Aidan wanted Warner to inflate his beach ball for him and as you can see he's very happy about it. Aidan is too young to go to the auction so he hung out with my Dad.

My first time at the auction was an interesting experience. The showroom turned out to be a dusty warehouse off of Keele and Lakeshore. When you first enter you'll see an assortment of video and pinball games all of which are all qay beyond their prime. People milled about the narrow paths prepared with electrical extension cords in hand, sometimes connecting them to consoles in order to test the units.

Part of the aution was held outside in the back parking lot. As I expected, these types of events attract some pretty interesting characters (I didn't see the elusive Ponytail-man).

We didn't expect to buy anything, this was more of a fishing expedition for us. I did witness a Baywatch pinball machine go for $1,500. This was a worthwhile trek, I see it as research trip.

After the auction Aidan and I headed to Swansea Townhall to check out the Holly Jolly Sale where mom was selling cards and jewlery.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

My POD day

A POD day, means Personal Off Day. My employer provides a combination of 8 POD and sick days per year and since it's coming close to the end of the year I'm taking advantage of some time off.

I can't say I relaxed though, in fact it was pretty busy.
It started as beautiful sunny and warm fall morning. I took Adian to the doctors for a checkup and immunization and flu shots. While in the waiting room Aidan made friends with a 3 year old Ethiopean boy, he was following him around and also have him a couple of hugs (too cute). Afterwards we strolled to the Tim Horton's thenwalked home but not before being turned away from a playground. In all fairness to the "mean" gatekeepers I didn't know it was a daycare. After watching and episode of Blue Clues it was lunch and time for a nap. I took the opportunity to finish cutting some granite tiles for the kitchen countertop. That was fun! I got to test out a new wet saw, cut through half inch granite like 'Butta'.

Late in the afternoon we hopped into the car and drove to Future shop and the Home Depot. I needed some more tiles and I also wanted some new music. I got my excercise chasing Aidan around the Future Shop as he rearranged the CD section and turned on and off every plasma TV within arms reach.

I made dinner, gave Aidan a bath, read him his favortite stories and tucked him into bed. Nice.

There is a major rain storm coming tonight. I swept up all the leaves in the backyard so that there's a clear drain. The last thing I want is to come home to a flooded basement. I'll end the day with a hot cup of tea and cherry pie.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

A poem for Dads


There are little eyes upon you and they're watching night and day.
There are little ears that quickly take in every word you say.
There are little hands all eager to do anything you do;
And a little boy who's dreaming of the day he'll be like you.

You're the little fellow's idol, you're the wisest of the wise.
In his little mind about you no suspicions ever rise.
He believes in you devoutly, holds all you say and do;
He will say and do, in your way when he's grown up just like you.

There's a wide-eyed little fellow who believes you're always right;

and his eyes are always opened, and he watches day and night.
You are setting an example every day in all you do;
For the little boy who's waiting to grow up to be like you.

Author Unknown

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Subway Tile

I got my butt into gear this weekend and got the backsplash done. I went with Daltile's subway tile called Rittenhouse Square. I love the traditional classic look, Marissa says she feels like she's in a bathroom. I still need to make a few custom cut pieces and work in the grout but so far I'm very pleased with how it turned out. I'm going to buy a wet tile saw tomorrow (Warren said he's gonna share the cost) so that should make the inside corner cut pieces easy as well as the 3/8" grantite tile top that I'll be doing tomorrow. Believe me, cutting ceramic tile with nippers is a waste of time and money, I already broke 8 pieces (50cents each) trying to fit around the outlet.

The undercabinet lighting is completed as well. Originally I wanted to go with Xenon because the're whiter and not as hot but I can't find them anywhere. So I've got 5 pucks hooked up to a 120watt transformer and an electric low voltage dimmer ($39!!! a dimmer)

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Where is my car?

I bought a car two and half weeks ago and have not seen it yet. I think it was a Mazda3 but it's been so long I can't be sure. So where is my car? I think I've been scammed. I'll give it another week, but if it starts to snow I'll be hoofing to work by TTC.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

First Halloween Party

Some people are against Halloween and will have no part of it. Generally they say it's because its it's Pagan origins. Personally, I've always liked Halloween and my parents loved passing out treats.

In most communities including ours, it's an opportunity to meet and chat with neighbours. On that evening eveyone is a kid again. And despite the usual evening rush hour traffic to get home it's really a neat thing if you think about it. People are trying to get home early to do all that fun stuff either for their own kids or someone elses'.

On Saturday night we went to Shaindy and Seth's across the street. They always have a big goolish bash. The kids party started at 6pm, adults after 9pm. As you can see Aidan was a pirate this year. Looks pretty cool eh?

He was a little aprehensive at first with all strangers around, probably more so that night because no one looked normal. After some time passed he was running around like he owned the place. He made alot of friends, but two in particular worth special mention. First, Shaindy's brother was dressed as Pooh Bear, Adian really liked him. And second Andrew who is Mike and Penny's son. Andrew didn't let Aidan wander too close to the stairs and he also made sure Aidan had lots to eat and drink. Andew mixed up some Apple juice in a shot glass and fed it to Aidan, so cute.

Easy like Sunday morning

I've love that old Lionel Richie song. Today is Sunday and a swim day for Aidan and dad. Unfortunately someone threw up in the pool so it was cancelled :-(

Instead we went to the Beach and it was really really really windy. I figured some running around time is just as good as swimming. He walked/ran from the car to the playground. It's really something to watch because we were in an open field it's was really up to him which path he decides to take to the playground. Eventually the wind and cold made us make a quick retreat back to the CR-V.

Along the way back we picked up some leaves and a 'Yoda' stick.

Poor guy was totally pooped by noon. But it was a fun time had by all.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

2006 Terry Fox Run

We participated in this year's Terri Fox Run as a family. Marissa's friend Ana was kind enough to join us as well.

Fortunately, after days and days of rain the weather for Sunday's event was spectacular. There didn't seem to be as many people attending at Wilket Creek park as in previous years but it was still a respectible turn out. As usual I picked up a participation sticker to add to my certificate, but this year we also started one for Aidan. Hope he continues the tradition.

Taylor Creek Park Bridge

Happy guys


Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Cabinet Doors

At last I've finished a set of doors. These are the lower doors for the kitchen work center.

I opted in favor of using MDF (medium density fibre) rather than wood. That's because MDF mills down quite nice and is perfectly flat and moisture stable. It's also relatively cheap too, the downside it the amount of dust created. The one thing to watch out is since it's not wood it needs the raw edges sealed and properly primmed prior to painting.

I like the simple and classic lines. It 5 pieces and milled using a router and a reversible panel bit.

I purchased a Benjamin Moore product called Melamine. It's a very hard urethane white paint. It will be used as the final finish. The guy at the store raved about it. But instead of using a brush I'm planning on buy a small air sprayer from Lee Valley tools.

4 more doors to go.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Evidence of standing

I've been trying to snap a photo of Aidan standing but it's not been easy. I think he knows what I'm up to so he's been very low the ground this weekend. But I finally did get a picture, not too dramatic but a photo nonetheless (by the way don't mind the person in the background, it's Aidan who is the subject of this post, hee hee).

After I snapped the photo he figured the jig was up so he started standing whenever the opportunity presented itself. The funniest thing was he saw himself standing in the mirror. I could tell he was actually fascinated by it and he stayed standing for at least a couple of minutes, laughing at the same time. His awareness of it just blew me away.

This afternoon we went to the Cabbagetown Art and Farm festival. Unfortunately the farm was closed :( due to a sewer backup. I don't know where all the animals were taken but there was lots of artists showcasing some pretty amazing crafts.

I hadn't been to the that area in 20 years and I'm impressed by quaintness of the neighnbourhood and homes. The last time I was they I accidentally stumbled across it while riding my bike over the Riverdale Park bridge that crosses the DVP. I saw some really beautiful homes today, Cabbagetown in truly a Toronto gem. I also saw Austin Delaney of CTV news. He was chatting it up with another broadcaster but I can't recall his name. Not a really famous person, like someone from Rogers Cable (LOL). I'm planning on going back there in the Fall and Winter to take some photos. It was a wonderful afternoon.

Thursday, September 07, 2006


For the past couple of weeks Adian has been doing a 2 second freestand. Sometimes he'll let go of the table he's hanging on to and other times he'll just stand up from a squating position. And if he's in a good mood he'll do this bouncing dance. The minute he sees us turn and look at him, he'll quietly sit down as it nothing happened.

I believe it was after seeing Owen and Erin a couple of days ago that he got motivated to stand for a longer time. My parents said he stood today for about 1 minute! In fact they have a photo of him clapping as well. They also said he has a favorite tune from a toy he likes to get up and dance to. It'll be so wierd to see him walk. They grow up so fast.

Lately he'll come up and kiss you too. Albeit an open mouth, slobbery kiss, but I'll take it. BTW, he he a cold this week and I felt like I was coming down with something so I hit the ColdFX. You never know about these baby germs, they can be 200 times more potent that adult cooties. Sometimes I think he's a moody kid, then other times he's so calm and cuddly. He'll sit on my lap and listen to me read bedtime stories then fall asleep, other times he'll try to sit on my back as I'm doing push ups. He's definately got a sense of humour.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Afternoon fun

We spent an afternoon at Kumari and Eric's home today, Ana and Joe were there as well.

There was alot to do for both Aidan and the guys. Eric's got a professional Chex Hockey game (as well as a ton of other cool stuff) exactly like one you'd find at Paladium. Unfortuntely I haven't played in a while so I got skunked by both Joe and Eric. Next time I'm over I'll ask for a rematch.

Aidan was introduced to a G-scale train set. He was as little timid of the sound and speed of the trains but I think he found it interesting. Their daughter Aaron was a great playmate. She pushed Aidan around on a Hippo cart and she graciously tollerated him grabbing stuff from her.

Each day Aidan is surprising us with his attempts to free stand. You and I take standing for granted but it's really amazing watching the process of a toddler go from crawling, squating and ultimately walking.

Ticking the ivories

Thinking inside the box

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Labour Day Weekend

Labour Day weekend was wet and windy thanks to hurricane Enersto, thank's alot Ernesto for a great end to Summer. But I'm sure there will be at least two more days above 30 degrees celcius or I'll eat a bug.

We all went "out of town", Mississuaga. Square One.

The photo shows Aidan in his "McLaren" F1 supercar, today the rain visor and rain tires are on. BTW, The photo ont the right is the real McLaren F1, he'll own one one day.

We bumped into a couple from our pre-natal class. They had their son Owen with them and it seems like Owen and Aidan are natural friends. I'm not sure who reached out first from their perch but they found themselves holding hands and smiling for a good 5 minutes. We had to pull them apart, so cute. Later, Aidan sat in his stoller as Owen walked around him.

I suspect that Aidan didn't want to be outdone by Owen so he decided he's walk the rest of way back to the car. Seriously.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Kitchen project moving along

It's been a lot of small steps since inception but I've finally built and installed 3 drawers and made a nice pine countertop.

Originally I wanted a hard maple top but the cost wasn't worth it. Besides, after a few coats of maple stain it'll look just as good and wear just as well. In fact pine stains much nicer than maple.

The granite tile tops I've ordered should arrive after labour day. What's left?
- 4 more drawers
- Drawer fronts
- 6 custom 5 piece shaker-style doors (to be painted as well)
- Lighting.

I purchased a simple rail and stile bit set for building the doors. I made a test door frame out of pine and it turned out pretty good for a novice. The real doors will be milled from 3/4" mdf with a 1/2" mdf panel. The plan is to hand paint and sand them to a high quality sheen, at least that's the plan.

All in all a very fun project and coming along without too much wasted to stupid mistakes.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

"Specialized" meets "Chariot"

The weather wasn't that nice today but I've been itching all week for a weekend bike ride so I was determined to get out.

This is Aidan and me speeding through Taylor Creek park. Today's route was enter the Park at the secret Woodbine/Cosburn entrance, to Sunnybrook, up to Laird Ave. then take the side streets back home. The in-flight meal was Arrowroot cookies and milk. My favorite too.

The little guy seems to like the ride. I'd love to be in the Chariot; close to the ground, plush and tasefully appointed upholstry, customized suspension.... But safety is the highest priority, in fact Aidan won't let us leave without his helmet.

Tonight my legs are really tired by it was worth every minute :)

Monday, August 21, 2006

Loves the convertible

This is Aidan up at Greg and Shiao-Li's place in Tiny, Ontario. He loves cars, especially the Cozy Couple line.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Happy 1st Birthday Aidan!

Today is Aidan's first birthday. It sounds cliche bit it really does seem like yesterday that Marissa and I were in a delivery (actually, operating room) with a team of doctors and nurses working to bring this little miracle to us.

I'm sure Aidan doesn't realize that it's his birthday but today there's something about his smile that makes me think that he knows it's a special day.

Despite having projects up to my eye balls and my first Architect counsel meeting I took the day off from work. It was a beautiful August summer day, very warm and not a cloud in the sky. After breakfast and some play time Aidan napped for most of the early afternoon. As far as I was concerned there wasn't a hurry to go out because we had the whole day ahead of us.

When Aidan did wake up we drove over to Withrow Park by the Danforth and spent the later afternoon splashing around the wading pool with the other kids and parents. Aidan enjoyed the water but I found it too cold, in fact my ankles began to get hives :-( He's truly a water-baby! Crawling all over the pool and splashing around.

Later we walked the Danforth, visited a toy store where he was introduced to Thomas the Train. We also bought him a cup cake to celebrate later that evening. What a wonderful day!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Aidan climbs mount Queensdale

Today the little guy came back from a day at the grandparents and decided to do some stair climbing. I've seen him climb a few steps before and Marissa says he's gone so far as halfway. But today he stopped for a brief rest at the half way point then practically ran up to the top landing, then scurried off into the second bedroom. Adventurous and fearless! That's my little guy!

Monday, July 17, 2006

Damn Birds and Bird Flu

Last thursday I decided to replace the kitchen exhaust vent because we noticed that a bird had decided to use it as a home. A couple of years ago I neglected to do the same for the bathroom vent and a bird ended up dying in it and stinking up my house. Anyways when I got the vent off I found three small sparrow eggs sitting confortably in the nest, being the sensitive person I am I decided to relocate then to a dense vine nearby. In doing so, I accidentally dropped the eggs on the floor :-( I felt like a total looser.

Shortly after replacing the vent I felt a uncomfortable scratchyness in my throat. That was followed by a sore throat then a day of chest congestion and wheezing. I woke up Saturday morning searching the Internet for Avian Flu symptons fearing the worst.

It's Monday and I went to work and I'm feeling much better, not 100% but at least I'm still alive.

Lesson #1, always wear mask and gloves.

Hey, at least I didn't miss my department picnic last Friday. I brought Marissa and Aidan too. It was a fun day for all. See, Aidan is tyring to solve the mystery of the skipping rope. He loves all things ropey.